Shanoff's W.U.C.: Wade, BCS, Manny, KFC

Today's Calls: Dwyane Wade vs. Heat fans, Coach K vs. John Kuester, Orrin Hatch vs. the BCS, Manny vs. Mets fans, Roy Halladay vs. the Trade Deadline, Tyler Hansbrough vs. James Harden, Magic Johnson vs. KFC and More. ↵

↵The Opening Pitch: What do Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson, Michael Jackson and KFC have to do with each other? I really don't know, but if you watched yesterday's Jackson funeral/tribute/wha?!?!, please let the rest of us know. ↵

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↵Meanwhile, I'm sure fans in Miami are thrilled that Dwyane Wade signed his lucrative long-term contract extension with the Heat in the very first moments after midnight last night, the earliest he possibly could. ↵

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↵What? He didn't? ↵

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↵What a terrific signal to send to his fans and his franchise that he is committed to bringing a title back to Miami — that it might not happen in 2010, but with him in place as the cornerstone, they can make a run at several of them. ↵

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↵Really? No deal? ↵

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↵And what a relief that he dropped the Palinesque "only quitters stick around" talking point that he wouldn't sign unless the team built a title contender around him right now, even though he previously hadn't committed to the team to staying around beyond next year. ↵

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↵"Palin-Wade 2012!" ↵

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↵Heat fans now avoid the rest of us snickering at them as they attempt to justify their cheering all next season for a player who so obviously would have disrespected and dismissed them by not declaring his reciprocal allegiance as soon as he could. ↵

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↵Actually, they — and Cavs fans — are the biggest chumps in sports fandom. ↵

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↵How awkward would it have been had Wade NOT signed last night, and spent the next season as some kind of lame-duck -- with fans cheering for him half-heartedly, knowing that NOT signing with the Heat sends the strongest signal he almost surely will be bolting for another city next summer. ↵

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↵Umm ... what's that you say? He didn't? ↵

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↵Wow, it sure is great that Wade cleared that up. ↵

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↵Nevermind. ↵

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↵Coach K back in Olympics? From "Redeem" to "Re-Dream," it sounds like Coach K is interested in leading USA Basketball in the 2012 Olympics. Give him credit, because it would be easy to take last summer's achievement and run; give him scorn, because it's a drain and Duke hoops will suffer for it. ↵

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↵BCS Goes to Washington: Most fans would like some sort of playoff system in college football; presumably, most fans would like to avoid climate disaster or heath-care systemic failure even more. Glad to see Senator Orrin Hatch has his priorities straight; would he hold the hearing if he was from Florida or Oklahoma or Texas? (I mean, really: A Justice Department investigation?) ↵

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↵Manny Meets New York: And, yes, he was booed. But — and this is incredibly important to understand — he was not booed as much as the home-team Mets were by their own fans. This is because cheating via steroids is bad, but futility on the field is, for fans, an even more egregious offense. ↵

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↵MLB Trade Mania: Roy Halladay is on the block! All it will take is a bunch of prospects and the willingness to shell out half of Halladay's roughly $15-million salary due for the rest of this year, plus the $15 million due next year. ↵

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↵You might immediately think "Yankees!" (and you'd be right), but the Jays would be crazy to put Halladay in their own division, if not this year then certainly the next. I personally think the Rays should go after him — low payroll notwithstanding — but the Jays shouldn't trade him to the Rays for the same reason. Ultimately, the best team with the deepest pockets is across the country — the Angels. ↵

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↵(I would suggest the Mets, if only to get the fans off their back for a few days.) ↵

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↵MLB Talking Points ↵

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↵— Final Vote Update: Kinsler, Sandoval still lead. ↵

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↵— Phantom tag? Is ump calling Jeter a liar? ↵

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↵— Insult + Injury: LAA loses to TEX, loses Vlad ↵

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↵— Great pitching: Sabathia | Wainwright ↵

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↵— Zito pitches well: It's always a surprise. ↵

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↵— Fantasy Stud: Paul Konerko (3-for-4, 3 HR, 7 RBI) ↵

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↵McNair Murder, Cont'd: Dan Steinberg on what it all doesn't mean. ↵

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↵NBA Summer League Notables! Orlando Edition. ↵
↵(1) Tyler Hansbrough: 23 pts (in another strong game!) ↵
↵(2) James Harden: 19 pts (Russell Westbrook: 22 pts, 8 ast) ↵
↵(3) Ryan Anderson (ORL): 33 and 14. Not bad for a VC trade throw-in. ↵
↵(4) Eric Maynor (UTA): 12 pts, 5 ast, 4 reb. ↵
↵(5) Jrue Holiday (PHI): 7 pts, 4 reb, 3 ast. ↵

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↵NBA Coaching Carousel: John Kuester hired by the Pistons. Players should expect a whole lot of "Well, when we won the title in 2004. ..." Here's a good sign: Whenever I saw the Cavs taking a timeout, it looked like Kuester, not Mike Brown, was the head coach. ↵

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↵Economy: The NBA salary cap dropped a million bucks or so (although league revenue was up). The biggest impact is on the teams that will or won't want to pay the dollar-for-dollar luxury tax for going over it. An extra million doesn't seem like much; I think it's a symbolic thing, to stay under. ↵

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↵NBA Offseason: The Raptors are not afraid of your salary-cap restrictions! They gave Andrea Bargnani a $50 million extension. Meanwhile, the Nuggets made their best move of the offseason by re-signing high-energy role player Chris Andersen, as valuable as any frontcourt player on the team, including Melo. ↵
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↵CBB Scandals: South Carolina reaches a new low of absurdity with "Bagel-Gate." (Wait: 14 minor violations? Is Lane Kiffin the Gamecocks' new recruiting coordinator?) ↵

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↵Business: LeBron James is at Allen & Co.'s annual (and supremely high-rolling) get-together in Sun Valley. I'm sure the moguls are a bit awestruck (but not THAT awestruck — that's why they are moguls). ↵

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↵Uniform Watch: Ron Artest will wear No. 37 with the Lakers — to honor Michael Jackson by wearing the number representing the number of weeks "Thriller" spent at No. 1. Which is the awesomest rationale for a jersey number ever. ↵

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↵The Last Word: Happy retirement, Joe Sakic. ↵

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↵Dan Shanoff writes The Wake-Up Call every weekday morning for SportingNews.com and blogs daily at DanShanoff.com. Got any comments, questions or feedback? Email Dan at shanofftsn-[at]-gmail-[dot]-com. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/danshanoff. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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